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What Alfred Russel Wallace Really Thought About Darwin 79

Calopteryx writes "The correspondence of Alfred Russel Wallace has gone online for the first time. New Scientist has opened a wormhole between the 21st and 19th centuries and has 'interviewed' the great man."
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What Alfred Russel Wallace Really Thought About Darwin

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  • by Runaway1956 ( 1322357 ) on Sunday January 27, 2013 @03:50AM (#42706077) Homepage Journal

    One result of Wallace's early travels has been a modern controversy about his nationality. Since Wallace was born in Monmouthshire, some sources have considered him to be Welsh.[7] However some historians have questioned this because neither of his parents was Welsh, his family only briefly lived in Monmouthshire, the Welsh people Wallace knew in his childhood considered him to be English, and because Wallace himself consistently referred to himself as English rather than Welsh (even when writing about his time in Wales). One Wallace scholar has stated that because of these facts the most reasonable interpretation was that he was an Englishman born in Wales.[8] []

    I guess the real question is, could he become king of England?

  • by pointybits ( 818856 ) on Sunday January 27, 2013 @05:08AM (#42706237)
    It's been done for Samuel Pepys: []
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 27, 2013 @08:32AM (#42706619)

    "Did Victorian English ever use blunt language in writing?"

    Of course they did. Otherwise words like "cad", "fop", and "dandy" wouldn't exist in their traditional sense in the English language. There's quite the collection of blunt insults that were used in the 19th century that have fallen out of fashion. Well, or in some cases, been re-tasked as words with slightly different meaning or as unfortunate acronyms.

    Anyway, both Darwin and Wallace were gentlemen enough to write and publish a paper together about their ideas rather than scoop each other, Wallace defended Darwin's ideas about evolution (and vice-versa), and in later life Darwin worked to arrange a small pension for Wallace. The feelings couldn't have been bad between them, although like any two friends they probably said bad things from time-to-time.

What this country needs is a good five cent ANYTHING!